Court: Tesla can sell cars directly to MA consumers

Mass. car dealers had tried to prevent direct sales

A Tesla all-electric car is on display, March 17, 2014, at a Tesla showroom inside the Kenwood Towne Centre in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Al Behrman)

BOSTON (AP) — The state’s highest court has thrown out a lawsuit aimed at blocking Tesla Motors from selling its upscale electric cars directly to consumers.

The Massachusetts State Automobile Dealers Association had sought to prevent the direct sales, citing a state law designed to block car dealers from abuses by car manufacturers.

The Supreme Judicial Court unanimously ruled Monday that the association and two dealers who sought block Tesla —Herb Connolly Chevrolet and Fisker Norwood — didn’t have legal standing to bring the case.

In its decision, the court said it would be “anomalous” to find to find in the state law cited by the dealers association “a lone provision giving dealers protection against competition from an unaffiliated manufacturer.”

The court said Natick has since given Tesla a license to operate a sales office at the Natick Mall.

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